Will the Fire Alarm Wake the World Up?

It’s beginning to look like the world may not quite manage to maintain its sleeping dreams through the end of the Obama Administration.  Having abandoned Iraq prematurely in order to have an election-year talking point, Obama is now quietly ramping up boots on the ground — naturally, without the sort of debate and fanfare that would lead to Americans’ knowing what’s going on:

The U.S. military has around 5,000 service members in Iraq, officials said on Monday, far more than previously reported, as the Obama administration quietly expands ground operations against the Islamic State.

The number of American forces in Iraq has come under increased scrutiny following the death over the weekend of a Marine staff sergeant, the second combat casualty in renewed U.S. operations in Iraq. He was killed when militants launched rockets at a small U.S. base around the city of Makhmour. The existence of the Marine detachment had not been known prior to Staff Sgt. Louis F. Cardin’s death.

And today, Europe added another substantial terrorist attack to its growing list:

As many as 31 people were killed and more than 180 injured as coordinated terrorist bombings rocked the Brussels airport and subway system during rush hour Tuesday morning in the Belgian capital. …

“We are at war,” French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said Tuesday. “We have been subjected for the last few months in Europe to acts of war.”

We learned after the ’90s that our society’s vacations from history only last so long, and that the longer it takes us to wake up in our own beds, the more difficult it is to get things back in order.  This isn’t a time for either denials or impetuous decisions.  Our civilization’s history and our nation’s founding documents chart a course for us — not an easy one, but a sure one in which we can have confidence.  We need only shed the hubris that we’ve evolved into new moral creatures.

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